It was an easy decision for multi-national sales and marketing company, EIMS, to establish its Asia Pacific office in Auckland, rather than in Singapore or Melbourne.
"Auckland was more business friendly, and putting all the costs together – including real estate, recruitment and taxes - it was cheaper. Melbourne was 60 per cent more expensive," says Benjamin Tellez, managing director, International Operations for EIMS.
"We needed to bring four key staff from Europe and the New Zealand government was more visa friendly. There were clear differences between Auckland and Melbourne, and Auckland won hands down."
EIMS specialises in delivering effective multi-lingual sales and marketing programmes for leading information technology (IT) companies around the world. With its head office in Bournemouth, England, and other branches in Barcelona and Miami, EIMS first set up its Asia Pacific office in Singapore in October 2013. But it struggled with hiring people and getting visa clearance – and looked further afield.
ATEED prepared a relocation report and gave Benjamin Tellez some contacts. He easily found office space in upper Queen St, thanks to the support of neighbouring tenant, Telelink NZ, and EIMS opened its new Asian Pacific office in March 2013.
The EIMS Auckland office started with 12 staff and increased to 25 by the end of 2013, with a target of 100 by the end of 2014 as it gathered in more clients. EIMS does business around the world in 32 languages and needs native-speaking staff to deliver the results.
EIMS advertised, without success, for the right staff in Singapore. A week’s advertising in Auckland produced an ethnic mix of 49 applicants, and EIMS’ initial staff covered Japanese, Thai, Korean, Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese languages, as well as English.
"The Auckland university is close to the city centre and we can tap into the pool of talent – hiring the `top guns’ for up to 20 hours a week," says Benjamin Tellez. "They finish their lectures at 3pm and come to work – it works out perfectly because of the time difference with South East Asian markets. We weren’t allowed to hire students in Singapore."
EIMS works for IT multi-nationals such as IBM, Dell, Microsoft, Oracle Cisco, EMC, Juniper Networks and Savvis in different markets, and is Good Technology’s exclusive partner in New Zealand and Australia. Towards the end of 2013, EIMS pitched for Symantec’s business in Asia Pacific and the contract meant another 10-15 staff was required in the Auckland office.
"We are a one-stop sales and marketing shop for the technology vendors – in effect, we become their commercial arm," says Benjamin Tellez. ``We sell better, faster and more efficiently … and help them expand.
"Asia Pacific is the growth market over the next five to 10 years, and we can supply comprehensive software and hardware solutions from cloud computing virtualisation, mobile security to video conferencing products. We prepare marketing plans, we research the different markets and we have a sales team that prospect for sales and unearth opportunities," he says.
Benjamin Tellez says the main markets for the Auckland team are New Zealand, Australia and Singapore. But he sees big potential in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan - "it’s massive" - Korea and Japan, and emerging markets of Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.
Photo: The first wave of staff members at the EIMS Asia Pacific office in Auckland were raring to go